Criminal Defense

Arrested for Drug Possession in San Diego – Your Options under PC1000 and Prop 36

California Penal Code 1000 and Proposition 36 were both enacted to give non-violent drug crime offenders alternatives to serving time in prison for drug possession. If you have been arrested for a drug possession charge in San Diego, you will want to familiarize yourself with these programs as soon as possible.  With the help of a knowledgeable lawyer, you can present your case to the court with the goal of staying out of jail and serving your time in a rehabilitation program instead.

California Penal Code 1000 (PC 1000) is known as a deferred entry of judgment program and gives first time nonviolent drug offenders with no prior record the option to plead guilty; but instead of serving time in jail, the offender must attend a class once a week for four months, which is a much better alternative to jail time.

As stated in PC1000: “Upon successful completion of a deferred entry of judgment program, the arrest upon which the judgment was deferred shall be deemed to have never occurred.”

This means if the rehabilitation course is successfully completed, and no other charges are made for the next 18 months the original case against you could be completely dismissed. For this to happen, all court fees must be up to date as well as all required meetings with the court.

California Proposition 36 (commonly referred to as Prop 36) was enacted in the year 2000 as the Substance Abuse and Crime Prevention Act. Its goal is “To divert from incarceration into community-based substance abuse treatment programs non-violent defendants, probationers and parolees charged with simple drug possession or drug use offenses”.

Whereas PC100 deals only with non-violent first time offenders, Prop 36 includes not only new convictions, but also persons on probation and non-violent parole violations.

Prop 36 is defined in the California Penal Code sections 1210-1210.1 as being a California “drug diversion”. Drug diversion is the practice of allowing eligible offenders to have their charges dropped if they succeed in completing a court approved treatment program.  Prop 36 defines a treatment program as include one or more of the following:

  • Drug education
  • Out patient or residential treatment
  • Detox and/or narcotic replacement therapy
  • Aftercare

The programs are usually 12 months long and can extend to 18 months in some cases.

If you or a loved one has been arrested and charged with use or possession of a controlled substance, it’s imperative you speak with a San Diego criminal defense attorney. To do so, please fill out the form to the right or contact our office. You do not want to put your future in the hands of a public defender when you are facing drug charges in the state of California. Instead, contact Mr. Elliott N. Kanter, who is an experienced San Diego criminal defense attorney with 30+ years of experience.  Your consultation is always free and confidential, and it will help you understand the legal options you have available in your case.

This article is for educational purposes only and does not in any way constitute legal advice. It also does not establish an attorney-client relationship.

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